Chickpeas are often stewed with a small amount of meat and a vegetable or two to make hearty one-pot feasts. Serve this rabbit and chickpea stew with chunks of rustic bread on the side.
30 ml extra virgin olive oil
340 g boneless rabbit, cut into large chunks
2 onions, roughly chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 large red pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
15 ml paprika
2 ml chilli powder
2 ml ground cumin
large pinch of ground cinnamon
2 bay leaves
250 ml dry white wine
250 ml chicken stock
225 g chopped tomatoes from a can
30 ml tomato purée
45 ml chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 pinches of saffron threads
60 ml hot water
1 can chickpeas, about 400 g, drained and rinsed
225 g new potatoes, scrubbed and halved
2 sprigs of fresh oregano OR marjoram leaves, coarsely chopped
grated zest and juice of 1 small orange, preferably a blood orange
salt and pepper
Heat the oil in a flameproof casserole, add the chunks of rabbit and sauté until browned on all sides
Add the onions, garlic and red pepper and fry, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes or until the onions have softened
Add the paprika, chilli powder, cumin, cinnamon and bay leaves, stir well and fry for 1 minute
Add the wine, stock, tomatoes with their juice, tomato purée and half of the parsley
Cover and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to very low and simmer for about 40 minutes or until the rabbit is very tender
Meanwhile, crumble the saffron into a small bowl and add the hot water — stir, then leave to soak for 15–20 minutes
Add the chickpeas and potatoes to the stew, together with the saffron and its soaking water, the oregano or marjoram, orange zest and juice
Stir, then simmer for 25–30 minutes or until the gravy has thickened and is not too soupy
Taste and add seasoning if needed — remove the bay leaves if you prefer.
Serve hot, sprinkled with the remaining parsley.
Instead of rabbit, use lean pork fillet (tenderloin) or lamb fillet or boneless leg, trimmed of fat and cut into bite-sized chunks.
Chickpeas are an important source of vegetable protein in many parts of the world, and they are a good source of soluble dietary fibre. In this recipe the chickpeas provide a greater amount of iron per portion than the rabbit (1.5 mg compared with 0.9 mg). The absorption of the iron is helped by the generous amounts of vitamin C provided by the vegetables, in particular red pepper.